CAN THE WORKLOAD-INJURY RELATIONSHIP BE MODERATED BY IMPROVED STRENGTH, SPEED AND REPEATED-SPRINT QUALITIES?

Review written by Stephen King info

BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVE

The assessment and management of workload has become common practice in the sporting world, with the aim being to try and find the balance between adequate training and player fatigue.

To date, several studies have documented the relationship between specific elements of workload and injury risk in team sport players, but very few have investigated potential mediators and moderators of injury risk. This would give use greater insight into injury risk, which is multifactorial. As such, the purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between training load, physical qualities and injury in team sport players.

METHODS

In this study, the authors monitored 40 amateur hurling players over two seasons who had an average experience level in the sport of five years. This included monitoring both pitch and gym-based sessions. These players were asked to provide a rating of perceived exertion (RPE) out of ten, with workload units being calculated by time spent performing the activity x RPE.

The physical qualities of players were assessed by conditioning staff during each phase of each season across a two-day testing period with 24 hours between testing days. During the observational period the conditioning staff assessed maximal lower body strength (3RM Trap Bar deadlift), with the final weight lifted referenced to players' body mass to provide relative lower body strength, as well as maximal linear speed across 5-, 10-, and 20-m, and repeated-sprint ability (RSA).

RESULTS

93 time-loss injuries were reported across the two seasons. The most common injury sites were the thigh (35%), the knee (11%), the ankle (17%) and the pelvis/groin (14%).

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